Home Away From Home

My first week in Ireland has been busy, hectic, eye opening, and absolutely amazing! I am so thrilled and happy to be here living, working, and learning! One of the first activities I did in Dublin was have my interview for my upcoming internship. (beginning tomorrow!) This gave me the chance to use the public bus system for the first time, work on my navigation skills, and get to know my boss a bit before starting work. She was extremely kind, and explained to me different things I would be working with in my internship. As a rising Junior, I am extremely eager to learn and begin doing hands on work in the marketing world. During my interview, I learned that I will be working with applications such as Photoshop and Adobe InDesign to create different promotional materials. I will also be utilizing Linkedin Premium and their SalesNavigator tool in order to better reach a new market. During my interview, it was stressed to me the importance of segmenting your target market and narrowing your marketing efforts onto the correct audience. Many of my tasks and projects will be revolving around this ultimate goal. I am also very excited because I will be working with GDPR for the duration of my internship, as it is vital to Ireland’s laws, customer satisfaction, and different PR and marketing efforts. I am excited to see the inner workings of this regulation, as I am a political science minor eager to see how this affects the company on a daily basis.

I am working for Public Affairs Ireland, an organization aimed towards training and developing other companies in the public sector. In some ways, this could be considered part of both the public sector, but also in the education industry. I have never worked in a company so focused on training and development, so I am excited to see how the company functions and the work it does.

One key skill that I think is important to be successful in this industry of education and training is to have confidence and leadership skills. While leadership is not something one can ever stop learning, having previous leadership roles is a good way to begin being successful in this industry. With people paying money to receive the service of knowledge, it is important to emanate confidence with real knowledge to back it up. With so many employees of a company relying on you, leadership gives you the soft people skills needed to properly train. I also think being organized and having a professional image is very important in education and development. When a company is approaching you about a concern they have and they expect a solution from you, it is important that your customer is satisfied with their product. It is also important that they find your company attractive enough in order to approach you. Advertising a service and making a service as smooth and good as possible is key to an industry such as education.

I think that communication is an incredibly important competency for this industry, especially in Ireland. Since arriving in Dublin, I have been approached and helped by some of the kindest people I have ever met. Whether is a bus driver noticing I am lost and helping me find my way, or a kind stranger in a restaurant who heard my accent and wanted to get to know someone new. Taking time to meet people and get to know them well is very important here, unlike how low context the United States is. Before moving forward with a training program, it is important that Public Affairs Ireland takes time to get to know their customers before diving into a lesson. Especially with the nature of education and training. If a company is seeking help from Public Affairs Ireland, there is most likely some flaw or concern that needs to be fixed. It is Public Affairs Ireland’s job to find this issue and fix it. In order to show respect, their needs to be prior communication.

Despite my nerves, I am very excited to begin work tomorrow. Having a new degree of independence is very refreshing from my life at Pitt. While I love my time spent in Pittsburgh, the same routine can grow monotonous and simple. Having a new internship in a new place with an entirely new culture provides me with a new challenge, as well as the motivation to continue to try new things. Public Affairs Ireland, here I come!